10 Ways To Have A Charitable Wedding

There are thousands of details (and dollars) that go into hosting a wedding. But luckily, there are just as many opportunities to give back—ensuring your wedding investment will have a positive impact that reaches far beyond the big day.

Bride and groom hold a chalkboard sign with an Albert Einstein quote about giving

Caroline Ro

If you want your wedding to make an impact on not only your guests but the world at large, here are 10 ways to have a charitable wedding:

1 } Host your wedding at a nonprofit venue.

Most museums and historical venues also operate a charity, which means your rental fee will go toward supporting their organization. Some of these venues stay afloat through donations and volunteer work, so you can rest assured the money you're spending is going to a good cause.

Bride and groom walk up moss-covered stairs at Morris Arboretum in Pennsylvania

Morris Arboretum | Yana Shellman Photography

2 } Trade the china for charitable donations.

Already have all the wine glasses and pot holders you need? Put just one item on your registry: a link to your favorite charity so that your wedding guests can donate to a cause in lieu of giving a traditional gift. Or register via charitable registry sites like SoKind or JustGive.

3 } Switch out the bachelorette party for a volunteer event. 

Bond over building a home together, serving the hungry in a soup kitchen, or doing a mud run for a cause. Need more ideas? Check out VolunteerMatch to find ways to get everyone involved.

4 } Turn "I Do" into "I Donate". 

Donate wedding leftovers to a nearby food bank, send your flowers to a local nursing home or hospital to be distributed to patients, and gift your gown to a bride who can't afford a new one.

A floral centerpiece with pale pink peonies by Pollen Chicago


5 } Get your bridesmaids on board.

You donated your wedding gown, now encourage your girls to donate their bridesmaid dresses. WGIRLS provides new and gently-worn formal dresses and accessories to underprivileged young women so they can attend their prom in style! And since bridesmaids dresses these days are so chic, it's a beautiful way to give them new life.

6 } Pour some good wine. 

OneHope Wine uses sales of their quality wines to benefit a range of charitable causes. We'll cheer to that!

7 } Give gifts that give back. 

Purchase wedding gifts for the bridal party from fair trade companies like Slate and Salt, Noonday Collection, and ABLE. For more gifts that keep on giving, check out this article.

8 } Do the world a favor.

In lieu of wedding favors, donate funds to your charity of choice and craft a cute card letting your guests know how they were a part of it. Or purchase wedding favors that give back, like these adorable packs of Wedding Cake Gum from Project 7.

Wedding Cake Gum from Project 7

9 } Have an attitude of gratitude.

When it comes time to send your thank-you notes, get them from a company like UNICEF to help the world's most vulnerable children, or Cards for Causes where 20% of the card price goes to the charity of your choice.

10 } Go the extra mile.

Jetting off for a honeymoon? Instead of cashing in those frequent flyer miles, donate them to Hero Miles to support wounded, injured, and ill Service members and their families.

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